Manage multiple environments using Database Migrations and GitHub Actions.
This guide shows you how to set up your local Supabase development environment that integrates with GitHub Actions to automatically test and release schema changes to staging and production Supabase projects.
Set up a local environment
The first step is to set up your local repository with the Supabase CLI:
You should see a new
supabase directory. Then you need to link your local repository with your Supabase project:
_10supabase login_10supabase link --project-ref $PROJECT_ID
You can get your
$PROJECT_ID from your project's dashboard URL:
If you're using an existing Supabase project, you might have made schema changes through the Dashboard. Run the following command to pull these changes before making local schema changes from the CLI:
_10supabase db pull
This command creates a new migration in
supabase/migrations/<timestamp>_remote_schema.sql which reflects the schema changes you have made previously.
Now commit your local changes to Git and run the local development setup:
_10git add ._10git commit -m "init supabase"_10supabase start
You are now ready to develop schema changes locally and create your first migration.
Create a new migration
There are two ways to make schema changes:
- Manual migration: Write DDL statements manually into a migration file
- Auto schema diff: Make changes through Studio UI and auto generate a schema diff
Create a new migration script by running:
_10supabase migration new new_employee
You should see a new file created:
supabase/migrations/<timestamp>_new_employee.sql. You can then write SQL statements in this script using a text editor:
_10create table public.employees (_10 id integer primary key generated always as identity,_10 name text_10);
Apply the new migration to your local database:
_10supabase db reset
This command recreates your local database from scratch and applies all migration scripts under
supabase/migrations directory. Now your local database is up to date.
The new migration command also supports stdin as input. This allows you to pipe in an existing script from another file or stdout:
supabase migration new new_employee < create_employees_table.sql
Auto schema diff
Unlike manual migrations, auto schema diff creates a new migration script from changes already applied to your local database.
employees table under the
public schema using Studio UI, accessible at localhost:54323 by default.
Next, generate a schema diff by running the following command:
_10supabase db diff -f new_employee
You should see that a new file
supabase/migrations/<timestamp>_new_employee.sql is created. Open the file and verify that the generated DDL statements are the same as below.
_24-- This script was generated by the Schema Diff utility in pgAdmin 4_24-- For the circular dependencies, the order in which Schema Diff writes the objects is not very sophisticated_24-- and may require manual changes to the script to ensure changes are applied in the correct order._24-- Please report an issue for any failure with the reproduction steps._24_24CREATE TABLE IF NOT EXISTS public.employees_24(_24 id integer NOT NULL GENERATED ALWAYS AS IDENTITY ( INCREMENT 1 START 1 MINVALUE 1 MAXVALUE 2147483647 CACHE 1 ),_24 name text COLLATE pg_catalog."default",_24 CONSTRAINT employees_pkey PRIMARY KEY (id)_24)_24_24TABLESPACE pg_default;_24_24ALTER TABLE IF EXISTS public.employees_24 OWNER to postgres;_24_24GRANT ALL ON TABLE public.employees TO anon;_24_24GRANT ALL ON TABLE public.employees TO authenticated;_24_24GRANT ALL ON TABLE public.employees TO postgres;_24_24GRANT ALL ON TABLE public.employees TO service_role;
You may notice that the auto-generated migration script is more verbose than the manually written one. This is because the default schema diff tool does not account for default privileges added by the initial schema.
Commit the new migration script to git and you are ready to deploy.
Alternatively, you may pass in the
--use-migra experimental flag to generate a more concise migration using migra.
-f file flag, the output is written to stdout by default.
supabase db diff --use-migra
Deploy a migration
In a production environment, we recommend using a CI/CD pipeline to deploy new migrations with GitHub Actions rather than deploying from your local machine.
This example uses two Supabase projects, one for production and one for staging.
Prepare your environments by:
- Creating separate Supabase projects for staging and production
- Pushing your git repository to GitHub and enabling GitHub Actions
You need a new project for staging. A project which has already been modified to reflect the production project's schema can't be used because the CLI would reapply these changes.
Configure GitHub Actions
The Supabase CLI requires a few environment variables to run in non-interactive mode.
SUPABASE_ACCESS_TOKENis your personal access token
SUPABASE_DB_PASSWORDis your project specific database password
SUPABASE_PROJECT_IDis your project specific reference string
We recommend adding these as encrypted secrets to your GitHub Actions runners.
Create the following files inside the
The full example code is available in the demo repository.
Commit these files to git and push to your
main branch on GitHub. Update these environment variables to match your Supabase projects:
When configured correctly, your repository will have CI and Release workflows that trigger on new commits pushed to
Open a PR with new migration
Follow the migration steps to create a
Checkout a new branch
develop , commit the migration file, and push to GitHub.
_10git checkout -b feat/employee_10git add supabase/migrations/<timestamp>_new_employee.sql_10git commit -m "Add employee table"_10git push --set-upstream origin feat/employee
Open a PR from
feat/employee to the
develop branch to see that the CI workflow has been triggered.
Once the test error is resolved, merge this PR and watch the deployment in action.
Release to production
After verifying your staging project has successfully migrated, create another PR from
main and merge it to deploy the migration to the production project.
release job applies all new migration scripts merged in
supabase/migrations directory to a linked Supabase project. You can control which project the job links to via
PROJECT_ID environment variable.
Sync production project to staging
When setting up a new staging project, you might need to sync the initial schema with migrations previously applied to the production project.
One way is to leverage the Release workflow:
- Create a new branch
mainas the branch source
- Push the
developbranch to GitHub
The GitHub Actions runner will deploy your existing migrations to the staging project.
Alternatively, you can also apply migrations through your local CLI to a linked remote database.
_10supabase db push
Once pushed, check that the migration version is up to date for both local and remote databases.
_10supabase migration list
Permission denied on db pull
If you have been using Supabase hosted projects for a long time, you might encounter the following permission error when executing
_10Error: Error running pg_dump on remote database: pg_dump: error: query failed: ERROR: permission denied for table _type_10_10pg_dump: error: query was: LOCK TABLE "graphql"."_type" IN ACCESS SHARE MODE
To resolve this error, you need to grant
postgres role permissions to
graphql schema. You can do that by running the following query from Supabase dashboard's SQL Editor.
_10grant all on all tables in schema graphql to postgres, anon, authenticated, service_role;_10grant all on all functions in schema graphql to postgres, anon, authenticated, service_role;_10grant all on all sequences in schema graphql to postgres, anon, authenticated, service_role;
Permission denied on db push
If you created a table through Supabase dashboard, and your new migration script contains
ALTER TABLE statements, you might run into permission error when applying them on staging or production databases.
_10ERROR: must be owner of table employees (SQLSTATE 42501); while executing migration <timestamp>
This is because tables created through Supabase dashboard are owned by
supabase_admin role while the migration scripts executed through CLI are under
One way to solve this is to reassign the owner of those tables to
postgres role. For example, if your table is named
users in the public schema, you can run the following command to reassign owner.
_10ALTER TABLE users OWNER TO postgres;
Rebasing new migrations
Sometimes your teammate may merge a new migration file to git main branch, and now you need to rebase your local schema changes on top.
We can handle this scenario gracefully by renaming your old migration file with a new timestamp.
_10git pull_10supabase migration new dev_A_10# Assume the new file is: supabase/migrations/<t+2>_dev_A.sql_10mv <time>_dev_A.sql <t+2>_dev_A.sql_10supabase db reset
reset fails, you can manually resolve conflicts by editing
Once validated locally, commit your changes to Git and push to GitHub.